Barings acquires three French postal assets in logistics drive

Global financial services firm Barings has acquired three Grade A commercial assets located in the French cities of Paris, Lyon and Poitiers from a French REIT managed by BNP Paribas REIM.

Financial details were not disclosed.

The assets comprise 71,000 m2 of space and are let to Poste Immo, the real estate subsidiary of Le Groupe La Poste, the French national postal service. They were purchased on behalf of institutional clients for a core investment strategy, according to Barings.

'These latest additions to our French portfolio brings our European logistic transaction volume in 2019 to €600 mln, of which €555 mln are acquisitions, currently representing the strongest sector of investment at Barings Europe,' said Gunther Deutsch, managing director, head of real estate transactions – Europe for Barings.

'A new European logistics separate account will further increase our appetite for logistics across the core+ and value-add risk categories, in France as well as in countries such as Spain, Italy, Sweden, Finland, the Netherlands and Germany,' Deutsch added.

The 23,000 m2 Paris asset, which was built in 2011, is located in Villeneuve-la-Garenne, 6.5 km from the city centre. A relatively short lease length provides an opportunity to generate income growth through active asset management, Barings said.

The 28,000 m2 Lyon property is located in Saint-Laurent-de-Mure, five minutes by road from Lyon-Saint Exupéry Airport, the country’s third largest freight hub. Both the Paris and Lyon assets are situated within the French 'Dorsale', a primary logistics corridor that runs north to south from Lille to Marseille.

The third asset is in Poitiers, west-central France, and was built in 2008. The 21,000 m2 property is 6 km from the city centre and includes land adjacent to the existing warehouse, which provides potential for extension or development of a new facility.

Séverine Maumy-Laffineur, managing director and real estate country head - France at Barings, said, 'Including this portfolio, we bought four logistics assets in France this year for our core strategy representing a total value of approximately €150 mln.

'These latest assets not only further increase our exposure in France but also introduce us to the growing urban logistics market through the purchase of Villeneuve-la-Garenne in Paris. When appropriate, the asset will be repositioned to fit the requirements of the market for such a location.'

Guillaume Delattre, chief investment office at BNP Paribas REIM France, added: 'This transaction is a great outcome of our asset management strategy. Following the successful renewal of the leases, we took the opportunity to sell these three assets in a very dynamic real estate capital market.'

Barings was advised by Oudot & Associés (Notary), Etyo (technical adviser) and JLL (commercial). BNP Paribas REIM was advised by Etude Thibierge & Associés (Notary) and BNP Paribas Real Estate Transaction France in a co-exclusive mandate with CBRE (commercial).

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